September 2014 Newsletter

Market Observations

We just checked the 356 Registry classifieds. There are twenty-five 356 for sale and eight 356s wanted. At a recent Mecun Auctions there were sixteen 356s for sale but only five sold. Eleven 356s did not meet the reserve. Perhaps, priced too high. You have to be careful at some auctions. Sometimes the chandeliers bid.
Flipping channels we stopped when we saw a 1962 Super Cabriolet on the block at Auctions America. We watched it go up and up and sell at $180K. It was followed by a nice blue Ferrari Testa Rosa flat 12. which sold for $145K. Later they had a 356A Cabriolet which went to $125K but didn’t meet the reserve and was a no sale.
At the big Monterey Auction Ferrari was the big winner with many multi million dollar sales and some records.
Porsche and Ferrari are similar in that both were low volume classics; race proven. However, we have not heard of an outlaw class for Ferrari and we doubt there is a D.I.Y. Ferrari restoration book.
The net of these observations is we are still confused, but think the 356 run up may have peaked.


BJ has done all the restoration work this month while Jim played with 356 parts and took it easy after an illness.
BJ started on the 356 project Barney. This was a barn find in Colorado. The owner was taking a fall mountain drive and saw the back half of a 356 under a tarp behind a barn. He went to the county and got the absent owners name and contacted them. They were storing the 356 for friend in California. He contacted the owner and bought the 356. When he got it home and started disassembly he saw it was really, really rough. He contacted us and others for restoration estimates and decided he couldn’t afford the restoration. He put it on E-bay as a project and we bought it for 5K.
We sent for a Certificated of Authenticity (COA) and found it was originally Ivory with Black Vinyl and Grey corduroy upholstery. A nice interior. It also was originally a sunroof 356. We could see the rough replacement of the top and the obvious roll over damage.
So this 356 is a bottom everything plus correcting a lot of rough exterior repairs. It is a black plate California 356 with the original 1963 plate SYN 895.
We did the disassembly and had the 356 media blasted. BJ started where we always start, the rear floor pan. We cut this out saving the original ledges on the sides and tunnel. We then repair the missing ledges. Next, inside the tunnel is cleaned and painted and center of the rear floor pan and cross piece is painted as you can’t get to them latter. The rear floor pan is positioned and marked for trim to fit. Then trimmed and installed and tacked. The front floor pan is done the same way. As we have said before after sixty plus floor pans it goes pretty quick. BJ had this done in a week. Then the bulkhead in front of the floor pan is trimmed and installed.
This 356 had the typical battery box rust but also damage to floor, sides, front and rear. These individual pieces are about $650 but can take a week or more to install. Each piece has to be correctly positioned to fit the next piece. Just a little bit off and the whole battery box will be misaligned. Fortunately, one vendor sells a complete battery box, it is jigged up and spot welded like the original. It costs about $1000 but saves at least thirty hours of labor. So, BJ has the battery box installed and will finish up the bottom i.e. struts, diagonal, closing panels, longitudinals, etc. Then he will start on the external repairs, the last of which will be the sunroof. We were able to find a sunroof coupe clip but they are tricky and time consuming to install i.e. its nice if the windshield fits.

So while BJ does 356 restoration, Jim will be involved in the remodel of our new home and shop. We expected to start in June but have been delayed until now by the Drainage, Erosion and Sediment Control- D.E.S.C. Plan. This is a Douglas county requirement and they won’t approve permits until this plan is implemented and inspected. This is the black plastic and straw rolls you see today at construction sites. The delay has been surveys, plan write up (eight detailed pages), resurvey and then finding an available qualified excavator. This remodel is finally started and is important to Barb and Jim as this is where they will live for the next twenty years. It will be on one level rather than the present four levels and exactly the way we want to live comfortably. Since there will be little news for the next few months we have decided to reprint an article we wrote for the 356 Registry eight years ago. It is about our first 356, a 1957 356 Carrera right hand drive. But before we start it we have to have;
Grandpa News

With Alex’s and BJ’s birthday in September and with Halloween, Sam’s birthday and Christmas coming up there have been a lot of catalog shopping going on. Alex and Sam grab the popular toy and clothes catalogs and circle and mark up them with their choices. We have to figure out if the princess dress is for Halloween or birthday.

“The Thailand Carrera 58355:
A Half a Circle around the Globe, A Full Circle in Ownership” by Jim Kellogg

It was 1973 when I received a fateful phone call. “Jim, it’s Jeff. I just bought a Poorsh. Want to see it?” “Sure” I said. So Jeff drove it over. It was a good looking car in red primer. To go for a ride I had to get in the “other” side as it was a right hand drive. It also had a sunroof. As we drove off I could see pavement under my feet and there was a strong gas smell and .. To be continued.